The Kanda Matsuri is one of Tokyo’s three most famous festivals, along with the Sanno Matsuri and the Fukagawa Matsuri. This was Anchor Kids International School students’ and teachers’ first time to experience the Kanda Matsuri. Unfortunately, this festival is held on the weekend so we cannot participate fully. However, we have been enjoying watching our neighbors prepare for it for the past few weeks by moving the “mikoshi” (festival floats) and putting up festival lanterns, streamers, and flags. This has been a very good opportunity for us to experience this special festival and we decided to prepare for it in our own way. 


One day when we were walking to the park for outdoor play, we spotted the mikoshi inside the nearby junior high school building. The children were so excited to see the mikoshi through the window. Then, the next day we asked the school staff if we could see them up close, and they said “yes”! Mr H did an observational drawing of a mikoshi. Ms. S sat beside a mikoshi and enjoyed free drawing. Mr. H said “It’s a ながしかく(rectangle)!” to describe the shape of the mikoshi. We found a chicken figure (or some other kind of bird??) on top and a picture of (what looked like) a tiger on the mikoshi. 


Later, the students painted a big box. Mr H tried to paint each side in a different color. Ms S concentrated on painting for a long time. (She usually changes activities very quickly, but for this activity she focused for a long time.) After painting, we stuck on gold paper because the real mikoshi looked very golden. Mr H tried very hard to make a bird on top, too! The students used many different kinds ofmaterials each day to add more and more details. On Friday, they made “katsugi-bou” sticks to carry our mikoshi. Somehow our mikoshi ended up with roses instead of the bird on top! We also watched a video clip of a past Kanda Matsuri. 

その後、子どもたちは大きな箱をペイントしました。Hさんは、それぞれの面を違う色で塗り、Sさんは、長い時間集中してペイントしていました。 絵の具を塗った後、本物のお神輿がとても金色だったので、金紙を貼りました。Hさんは、鳥を乗せようと頑張っていました!毎日、いろいろな材料を使って、どんどん素敵なお神輿になっていきました。金曜日には、お神輿を担ぐための「かつぎ棒」を作りました。なぜか、鳥の代わりにバラが乗っているお神輿が出来上がりました!また、過去の神田祭りのビデオクリップを見ました。

Then we worked together and carried our mikoshi. First we took it to the school office and showed it to all the people who work for our parent company, and then we carried it around our neighborhood. Some people said “Cute!” when they saw us. Lastly, we went to the junior high school where the real mikoshi are kept and took photos with our own mikoshi! We hope the students felt the warm atmosphere of our neighborhood and the liveliness of this special festival!

そして、みんなで力を合わせてお神輿を担ぎました。まず、親会社に勤めている人たちに見せてから、近所を担いで回りました。私たちの姿を見て「かわいい!」と言ってくれる人もいました。最後に、本物のお神輿が置いてある中学校に行き、自分たちのお神輿と記念撮影をしました!子どもたちは、近所の方々の温かい雰囲気や、この特別なお祭りの賑やかさを感じたのではないかと思います! わっしょい、わっしょい!